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SYFY WIRE Harry Potter

Merlin's beard! Warner Bros. re-adapting 'Harry Potter' saga as TV series with new cast

Potterheads may finally get to see S.P.E.W. and Hepzibah Smith brought to the screen.

By Josh Weiss
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Mischief Managed! Warner Bros. Discovery is officially looking to wipe the Harry Potter slate clean (sort of) with a television series for the newly-christened Max streaming service that will re-adapt J.K. Rowling's seven bestselling novels about the famous boy wizard. Per the release, the show is being envisioned as a "decade-long" undertaking with a new cast and "the same epic craft, love and care this global franchise is known for. Each season will be based on a different book in the magical collection.

"We are delighted to give audiences the opportunity to discover Hogwarts in a whole new way," Casey Bloys, chairman and CEO of HBO & Max Content, said in a statement Wednesday. “Harry Potter is a cultural phenomenon and it is clear there is such an enduring love and thirst for the Wizarding World. In partnership with Warner Bros. Television and J.K. Rowling, this new Max Original series will dive deep into each of the iconic books that fans have continued to enjoy for all of these years."

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“Max’s commitment to preserving the integrity of my books is important to me, and I’m looking forward to being part of this new adaptation which will allow for a degree of depth and detail only afforded by a long form television series,” added Rowling, who is on board as an executive producer alongside Neil Blair and Ruth Kenley-Letts.

The books were, of course, already translated into eight blockbuster films (now streaming on Peacock) that conjured up more than $9 billion at the worldwide box office and kicked off a Hollywood scramble to find the next great YA film franchise. David Heyman, who oversaw the film adaptations, is currently in talks to produce the television series.

Daniel Radcliffe starred in all eight adaptations, portraying the Boy Who Lived alongside an embarrassment of British acting talent: Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Alan Rickman, Gary Oldman, Kenneth Branagh, Maggie Smith, Ralph Fiennes, Timothy Spall, Emma Thompson, Robbie Coltrane, David Thewlis, Michael Gambon, Fiona Shaw, Richard Griffiths, and more.

Could a TV show come close to matching (or perhaps even surpassing) such a powerhouse ensemble? Therein lies the slightly contentious issue of remaking an iconic property known by millions of people the world over. It's almost like rebooting the Star Wars and Back to the Future trilogies. These blockbusters are so ingrained into our cultural fabric, reinforced by regular marathons aired on SYFY and Freeform, that some might consider it quite risky to revisit them with new talent.

With that said, there is a rather large contingent of die-hard Potter fans who have clamored for a small screen take on the Wizarding World, given how the movies were forced to condense and/or cut large portions of the overarching narrative to fit within the confines of a limited feature-length runtime. The prospect of seeing every tiny detail pulled from the source material — from the complete Marauders backstory, to S.P.E.W., to Hepzibah Smith — could be enough to fill any longtime Potterhead with a great deal of excitement.

Following the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 over 10 years ago, Rowling and Warner Bros. kept the magic alive via the popular Wizarding World theme parks at Universal Studios, the innovative Harry Potter and the Cursed Child stage production, a trio of Fantastic Beasts movies set several decades before the Potter timeline, and the Hogwarts Legacy video game.

Relive the magic with all eight Harry Potter movies — now streaming on Peacock, and keep an eye out on SYFY for frequent magical marathons of the saga!